UX Week Keynote Speaker Denise Jacobs on Making Creativity Happen

Denise Jacobs calls herself a “creativity evangelist”, helping people cultivate the tools and skills necessary for leading a creative life. These skills are important for everyone, but especially for creative professionals such as designers and developers, for whom the creative challenges never really stop. In this interview, I talk with Denise about how her own life inspired her take on creativity, and what it takes to keep creativity flowing. Jesse James Garrett: Denise, you’ve taken an interesting path to get to where you are. Denise Jacobs: Yes. And it’s actually funny because I find that people are really fascinated by it. JJG: I was when I first heard about it. Tell us a little bit about it. DJ: I’ve been working in the web industry since around 1997. I started off teaching myself HTML and making websites, and then got into doing project management at Microsoft. But I really didn’t enjoy project management. But in the course of that I ended up stumbling into teaching soapmaking classes, of all things. JJG: Soapmaking? DJ: Yes, I started making soap because I was so frustrated with project management that I started doing something creative. I just felt so creatively stifled by working in spreadsheets all day and I just felt like this was not what I was supposed to be doing with my life. So I learned how to make soap and then I started making soap. And then people asked, “Do you sell this? and I said, “Sure.” JJG: I will sell it if you will buy it. DJ: But then people were asking me how to make it, and...

NUX Manchester, 3 March, Creativity in organisations

The next NUX Manchester event is taking place on 3rd March and will be at the usual place at the Code Computerlove office in City Centre Manchester. Get your free ticket here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/nux-manchester-3rd-march-creativity-in-organisationscreativity-with-uncreative-client-teams-tickets-10723998769 We’re delighted to welcome back two old friends of NUX: Ian Franklin and Adrian Frost from IdeaSmiths. Creativity in organisations Creativity with uncreative client teams Although we in UX are creative people, our clients and the users we involve in user centred design won’t all be. The challenge we have is getting these people to loosen up and think differently; to get them once again to be the 6 year old for whom the cardboard box was a boat, a train, a house and a spaceship all in the same afternoon. How do we turn the mundane business issue into an exciting challenge, how do we unstick the stuck who are obsessed by the one failed attempt? In a highly interactive session people will be introduced to and get a chance to try out some methods for helping teams be creative, to get them moving from being problem focussed to solution focussed. Getting people to be creative and playful is one thing, the next challenge is to get them to ‘play nice’; so the session will also cover facilitating good team working. Adrian Frost, IdeaSmiths Adrian Frost has 15 years of experience as a facilitator, trainer, organisational development consultant and coach. Formerly the Creativity and Innovation champion at Corus, Adrian’s extensive experience of creativity and innovation includes: training teams in creative problem solving techniques; developing innovation processes including stage-gate and incubator; running creative problem solving and...